How was your experience with Abigail Delaney at Methodist for Women?
From the start of receiving my PCOS diagnosis in 2018, Dr. Delaney has been informative, re-assuring, and compassionate. In 2019, we transferred our first embryo which unfortunately did not stick around. Dr. Delaney felt this was primarily due to thin uterine lining. When I was ready to try again, Dr. Delaney wanted me to gain 10-15 pounds to increase estrogen levels and build a more robust uterine lining. I finally achieved my goal weight, although my second transfer was canceled on two occasions. One transfer was canceled due to thin uterine lining and the second was for OHSS complications leading to a short hospitalization. It should be noted that I was being monitored by other REs when my OHSS peaked, as Dr. Delaney was not available. It was Dr. Delaney, however, who determined my labs were critical and that I needed IV hydration. During my hospitalization, Dr. Delaney admitted my case was more complicated than she initially anticipated. She shared with me that she closely communicates with her colleagues to determine the best and safest protocol to achieve our desired results. This was reassuring to know she cared enough to reach out to other specialists to help us achieve the results we've been praying for. Unfortunately, we have yet to see a positive pregnancy test after two transfers.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Abigail Delaney at Methodist for Women?
Take notes and advocate for yourself like you would with any other doctor. Remember that you are the customer and your RE is providing a service. Your questions and concerns are valid, as you're the one putting your body, emotions, and finances on the line. Don't be afraid to ask "stupid" questions.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Abigail Delaney at Methodist for Women?
Since being diagnosed with PCOS, I felt completely comfortable around Dr. Delaney. I knew I could ask the "stupid" questions and she wouldn't treat me as if I should already know the answers. My first egg retrieval and transfer went relatively well although did not end with desirable results. Leading up to my second transfer, I was hospitalized for OHSS. I was unbelievably frustrated, emotional, and uncomfortable. And truthfully? I was mad. Not only had our transfer been canceled, but I knew a hospitalization related to fertility medications would not be financially friendly on our household income. During my hospitalization, Dr. Delaney was compassionate and comforting, visiting me during my stay and discussing options for future transfers. She also called me personally on her cell phone once I returned home to ensure I was continuing a path to recovery.
Describe the protocols Abigail Delaney used in your cycles at Methodist for Women and their degree of success.
For my egg retrieval, I remember stimulating with Follistim. I also used Ganirelix and a Lupron trigger to prevent OHSS. As I prepared for my first transfer, I was using oral/vaginal/transdermal estrogen (unsure of dose), baby Aspirin, and progesterone in oil. I may have been taking something else, although it’s been so long I can’t remember. In preparing for my second transfer, Dr. Delaney's goal was to increase circulation to my uterus. Therefore, I was on the following medications: vaginal estrace 2x/daily, 1/2 tab vaginal Cialis, L-arginine, baby Aspirin, Del-Estrogen every third day, and progesterone in oil.
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
Strengths and weaknesses of the nursing staff varied, as I would frequently work with different nurses. For the most part, I was very happy with the nurses I worked with. They were always upbeat, comforting, and knowledgeable. On occasion, I would work with a particular nurse over the phone who seemed to contradict what Dr. Delaney had previously told me and even recommended I start birth control on the wrong date. I have not worked with this nurse in quite some time – not by choice, just by chance. Most nurses have been really great at communicating with Dr. Delaney any questions I have to ensure we were all on the same page.
Describe your experience with Methodist for Women.
Overall, the clinic is very efficient. Reception staff are always friendly and welcoming. If it weren't for the early hour blood work and ultrasounds, I don't know how I would be able to make this all work with my job.
Describe your experience with your monitoring appointments at Methodist for Women.
Monitoring appointments were first come first serve. Depending on the day, there could be a lengthy line down the hall. Knowing this, I always showed up at the time the clinic opened or even a bit earlier so I could commute to work. It has never been a problem with my schedule. I do, however, wish they allowed more time for questions/concerns following the monitoring appointment. I felt rushed sometimes and felt privacy to ask these questions was limited, as you are sometimes exposed to other patients due to the work space.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Abigail Delaney at Methodist for Women.
At the time, my egg retrieval expense was approximately $7,100. PGS testing for up to 8 embryos was $1,200. Cryopreservation of embryos was $1,000. Frozen embryo transfer was about $4,400. Medication expenses varied depending on the pharmacy for us. I would say we typically spent anywhere from $400-$1,000 on medications for egg retrieval and each transfer prep. This is a rough estimate!
Describe Abigail Delaney's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Methodist for Women.
Dr. Delaney wasn't opposed to doing an embryo transfer with two embryos, as we discussed this to increase chances for success. Although she did not recommend doing a multiple embryo transfer at this time, as we have PGS tested embryos.